Are you one of those folks who are looking for an answer to what is the best drain cleaner for grease? Don’t feel ashamed as you aren’t the only one. Surprisingly, a clogged drain due to accumulation of excess grease ranks as one of the most common issues faced by people. It is one of those plumbing problems that aren’t easy to resolve. But that most definitely doesn’t mean that there is no possible way to answer what is the best drain cleaner for grease other than calling the plumber.
Before you make the call, we are going to list down a few cost-efficient tricks and hacks that can be used to keep the grease at bay – literally.
But before we get on to answer your what is the best drain cleaner for grease question, let’s first try to understand some basics about grease, how it accumulates here, where it comes from, and what are the ways to avoid it in the future. This blog will hopefully explain it all.
Whenever grease accumulates inside a drain pipe, it begins to blocks the passage for water and eventually leads to an overflow or burst in the drain pipe due to water pressure. When grease accumulates, it leaves behind a stinging reek, makes already-drained mess such as leftover chicken bones, vegetable or fruit peels resurface in the basin, and causes panic.
As soon as that happens, you are greeted by an unhygienic mess that needs to be taken care of, panicking you enough to pick up the your phone and dial the plumber’s number.
Sadly, most people don’t know that calling the plumber should always be the last resort as clogged drain due to grease isn’t that alarming of a situation. To understand better, let’s first understand the grease comes from.
Where Does Grease Originate?
Fats, oil and grease are common by-product of nearly everything that we consume. There are many other things, including meat, dairy products, food scrapes, coffee, butter rice, grinds, egg shells, soaps and detergents that can easily accumulate grease in a drain pipe, so the first step to figure out what is the best drain cleaner for grease, knowing where does the grease originate from is important.
Grease is not only limited to that. Anything that is food or used in cooking and later drained in the sink, can cause the grease to accumulate and clog the drain pipe. Even when you are at your most cautious, accumulated grease can surprise you. You won’t even know of its existence, until you have an overflowing oily sink, leaving you wondering where you went wrong.
Another main culprit for all that greasy accumulation can be your fat-based soap. Yes, you heard us right. Most of the dish-washing soaps are made using animal or vegetable fats. The natural fats, despite the addition of preservatives, become the cause of all grease accumulation at the bottom of drain pipe or around it.
The most frustrating part: you will have no clue about it until one day you have an overflowing sink. Grease may take months to accumulate and only hardens when exposed to air.
Where Can Grease Build Up?
When seeking answers to what is the best drain cleaner for grease, some of the most easily clogged pipes involve the one that is directly linked to the kitchen sink. If you are on the smarter side and occasionally drain down hot water to avoid grease accumulation after draining grease, fats or oils indirectly in the sink trap, know that after the water flushes down in the drain, it starts to lose temperature and eventually cools down.
The water will continue to flow smoothly, but it will also allow grease to accumulate at the base of the sink, at the opening of the drain pipe of the main drain hole.
As you continue to drain more oils and fats in the sink, the grease will start to solidify and further harden. Sooner or later, it will start to show floating on top of the water and slowly begin coating the drain pipe from all sides. The further you continue to flush down more FOGG (Fats, oils, grease and grit) it will become bigger, ultimately clogging the whole drain. When that happens, it will block the water passage, causing an overflow or busted pipe.
Figuring Out What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease:
There are myriad options when it comes to cleaning drain pipes. Most of them however are not strong enough to get those last bits of accumulated grease around the edges, compelling one to scrub them off by hands. So when the question is what is the best drain cleaner for grease, one really needs to find a solution that is most effective and also long-lasting. In this section, we shall finally reveal the best of the best drain cleaners to combat accumulated grease.
Few of them involve mechanical equipment, but most of them are remedies that don’t require any costly or toxic chemical detergents. Once we have listed down all the available options, we shall then rank each one of them based on their efficiency and impact, eventually providing you with the answer to what is the best drain cleaner for grease.
So, let’s get on with it.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #1: Vinegar and Baking Soda
If you want to figure out what is the best drain cleaner for grease, this unique mixture of two ingredients in water might come to you as a surprise. The reason why this is such an uncommon yet effective means to clean clogged drains due to grease is because most people don’t want to get their hands dirty when it comes to drain cleaning. Their first option is to get someone to get the job done for them. If only they knew that with these two ingredients, clogged drains due to grease will become history.
Curious enough yet?
We are talking about the vinegar and baking soda mixture. It is by far the most effective way to clean clogged drains, is hassle-free and never goes wrong. Here’s what you will need to prepare the mixture.
Combine one cup of both vinegar and baking soda. As soon as you will combine these two, you will notice fizzy bubbles appearing. It won’t take long for the fizz to appear, so you have to be really quick. Without letting it rest another second, pour in the fizzy mixture in the sink hole that has been clogged. As soon as the mixture goes down the drain, it will start working wonders and effectively get rid of all the grease that has built up.
This will also get rid of the gunk that has clogged the water passage. Let the mixture stay in the pipe for at least 20 minutes. Ensure that you don’t run down any liquid in the drain. While the vinegar and baking soda are working their magic, heat up a pot of water on the stove and after letting the mixture lay in the drain pipe for about 30 minutes pour down the hot water to rinse all the grit and grease off.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #2: Chemical Cleaners
Chemical-based cleaners offer yet another promising answer to the “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” question. The chemicals help instant clog-relief by dissolving the grease, fats or oils in the drain pipe. Chemicals that are most commonly used as solution for grease and clogged drains include sodium hydroxide or sulphuric acid that instantly dissolve any solids in the drains.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #3: Cold Water
The reason why most people prefer cold water over hot water when seeking answer to “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” is because cold water eliminates the problem completely rather than delaying the issue. True, hot water is one of the best answers to what is the best grain cleaner but not as effective when grease buildup is the problem.
In case, you have inadvertently, poured down grease or oily water in the kitchen sink, ensure that you run cold water immediately after in the garbage disposal. What will that do you, you may ask? It will solidify as much grease as possible, while it is still in the disposal. While the cold water is still in the garbage disposal, run it.
This will clear both grease and oil. Once you are sure that the grease and oil have been complexly solidified and gone down the drain, only then you can run hot water to clear the passage.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #4: Hot Water
Like cold water, hot water too perfectly fits the answer for what is the best drain cleaner for grease question. When faced with a greasy drain pipe, pouring down hot water sometimes works too. All you need is to get a big pot of water on the stove, let it boil or warm enough that it starts to give off steam. Once the water nears boiling, run it down the drain.
This technique is most effective after a greasy meal, which means it needs to be done every few days in a week or two to avoid any buildup and hardening of grease around the edges of the drain pipe. You may question how does grease accumulates up when you can’t see it on any of the plates or utensils used in the cooking or warming up of delivered meals. The question is as valid as the “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” itself as grease often looks non-existent due to its pale color.
When you put in the dishwasher such utensils without proper cleaning, you are only allowing it to gather together and find a vacationing spot around the edges of the drain pipe. Therefore, ensure that you pour down a pot filled with hot water every now and then after a greasy meal to avoid grease-related problems in the future.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #5: Drain Snake
The drain snake is also an effective method to answer your what is the best drain cleaner for grease question. It is metal rod/cable that can be inserted in the drain pipe and twisted several times to unclog a drain. Although it is best when unclogging the drain, it still is an effective strategy to unclog an entirely clogged drain due to grease build up.
Once the drain snake has poked the accumulated grease enough, hot water can be run down the drain to further soften the accumulation and eventually clear it up. The hot water will dissolve some of the grease but still won’t flush it out completely.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option #6: Hydro Jet Equipment
One of the often advisable drain cleaners for grease accumulation is using hydro jet equipment powered with a drain auger. They can easily be rented from a hardware store. However, it is still recommended that you use a professional drain cleaner.
If you think that you aren’t a suitable candidate to operate the machine on your own, it is best not to get involved as you may end up injuring yourself and still have a clogged drain due to grease. Hydro jet equipment works by flushing water in the drain pipe fueled by pressure, getting every last inch of grease clear from the pipe.
What Is The Best Drain Cleaner For Grease? Option # 7: Call a Plumber
The last resort should involve dialing the local plumbing company. Many a times, we underestimate the severity of the situation upon cleaning we either end up damaging the pipe or making the situation even worse than before. If the situation gets out of your hand and you feel like you no longer are winning against the grease, instead of trying to figure out the answer to the question what is the best drain cleaner for grease, hire professional help to come assist you in the process.
Sometimes the clogs aren’t’ in the drain pipe, but have gone deeper – well beyond the trap. Homemade remedies may have seemed to work in the beginning, but may not longer be efficient when it comes to fighting years’ old accumulated grease. Therefore, consulting a technician or professional plumber is a better option. Think of it as an investment rather than an expense as he/she will ensure proper cleaning of the drain pipe.
They will further suggest you some hacks to tackle the greasy mess in the future by recommending effective, appropriate and safe methods that will answer your “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” question in a satisfactory manner.
Now time for the countdown:
Looks like the most promising answer to the “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” question is:
- Vinegar and baking soda
- Chemical and Enzymatic Cleaners
- Hot water
- Cold Water
- Hydro jet equipment
- Professional plumber
Avoiding Grease Clogged Drain In The Future:
It seems useless to always find the answer to the question what is the best brain cleaner for grease when one simply plans to repeat the same mistakes over and over again. With greasy clogged drains, prevention is the only tactic that works. Once you will start avoiding deliberate or unintentional running down grease or oily food into the kitchen sink, you don’t have to worry about getting it clogged or accumulated by hardened grease.
How can you prevent a greasy drain in the future? Here are some helpful ways so that you no longer have to look for an answer to the “what is the best drain cleaner for grease” question in the future.
- Ensure that you wipe off all pots, dishes, and pans clean of any solids that remain in the utensils before putting them in the dishwasher for cleaning. Moreover, also ensure that the material you have scrapped doesn’t find its spot in the sink but in the trash can.
- Avoid using dish-washing soaps that don’t have an anti-grease property. Dish-washing soaps with such properties prevent the accumulation of grease, which ultimately clogs up your drain. The reason they don’t find a spot in the methods for determining what is the best drain cleaner for grease is because they aren’t meant to remove grease, but only prevent grease build-up from happening.
- Avoid flushing down any grease directly into the sink. All those items that have active grease in them such as butter, oil, egg shells etc. must be disposed off in the trash. Additionally, when washing manually, ensure that you allow all utensils to sit in a grease-dissolving cleaner or solution before the actual washing.